Hillis AE: Pharmacological, surgical, and neurovascular interventions to augment acute aphasia recovery. Am J Phys Med Rehabil 2007;86:426–434.
Aphasia recovery has often been attributed to a combination of “spontaneous recovery” and rehabilitation. However, a variety of new pharmacological, surgical, and interventional neuroradiology procedures have been developed that can complement rehabilitation in the first days to weeks after stroke by restoring blood flow to dysfunctional but salvageable brain tissue. This paper will review the medical and surgical interventions to improve regional cerebral blood flow that recently have been shown to (1) augment aphasia recovery by improving tissue function, and (2) prevent expansion of the stroke that would otherwise impede recovery. Success with such treatments facilitates aphasia rehabilitation by improving the baseline language performance that must be improved further with language therapy.